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Higher Education: Foreign Students

Department for Education written question – answered on 18th May 2020.

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Photo of Ben Spencer Ben Spencer Conservative, Runnymede and Weybridge

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the covid-19 outbreak, what recent assessment he has made of the adequacy of availability of courses for international students at UK universities for academic year 2020-2021.

Photo of Michelle Donelan Michelle Donelan Minister of State (Education)

Teaching, learning and assessment in higher education (HE) are not stopping. We are working with the sector to ensure universities are able to make all reasonable efforts to enable all students, both international and domestic, to continue and complete their studies; for their achievements to be reliably assessed; and for qualifications to be awarded securely.

Despite the significant disruption being felt across the HE sector, students deserve appropriate support and recognition for their hard work and dedication - many universities and colleges have moved rapidly to develop new ways of delivering courses through online teaching and alternatives to traditional end-of-course exams.

Our universities will always be open to international students. Both the government and the HE sector are working together to ensure existing rules and processes are as flexible as possible under the current unprecedented circumstances, to ensure that international students who are planning to study at a UK institution from autumn 2020 can do so.

The UK looks forward to continuing to welcome international students in the future. They enrich UK HE culturally, socially and economically, and are one of the reasons why our HE sector remains world-class.

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